Choosing The Proper Meal Kits For Diabetics
Meal delivery kit services, such as Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, and Plated, have become increasingly popular in recent years. People are working longer hours than ever before, which means that going to the grocery store to prepare a meal is simply not realistic for many. At the same time, we all know how unhealthy eating take-out every night can be. Meal delivery kits, which deliver your recipes and all the ingredients you need to make them right to your door, allow you to save time while still eating healthy.
However, most meal delivery kits are marketed towards a general audience (i.e., those who do not suffer from serious dietary restrictions related to a medical condition). As a result, those who have diabetes may be wondering if a meal delivery kit will provide them with the food they need to stay healthy and to control their diabetes. Fortunately, many meal kit delivery services are starting to do a much better job of catering to people with dietary restrictions. Below we will look at how you can best take advantage of meal kits for diabetics.
Why Food Matters When You Are Diabetic
If you have been diabetic for any amount of time, you probably know firsthand how big of a role food plays in your life. Food plays an especially huge part in helping to control blood glucose levels. Along with physical activity and medicine, eating the right foods is an essential component to keeping your blood glucose levels in their target range.
However, not only do the types of foods you eat have an effect on your blood glucose levels but so does the time of day you eat and the amount you eat. We will look in closer detail at these two points below, but what you should remember is that meal planning is a big part of making your diabetes more manageable.
Foods You Can Eat If You Have Diabetes
If you were recently diagnosed with diabetes, then you may be worried that you will no longer be able to enjoy the same foods as you did before or that your diet will become overly restricted. Thankfully, these fears are largely unfounded. While you may have to reduce how much you eat of some foods, in general, the same advice applies to you as to everybody else: you should have a healthy, well-rounded diet that consists of healthy foods from the five main food groups.
Those food groups are vegetables, fruits, grains (half of which should be whole grains), protein (including meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, and peanuts), and nonfat or low-fat dairy. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) runs a useful website called Choose My Plate which is great for both diabetics and non-diabetics who want help building a meal plan that gets in all of the main food groups.
Also, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases recommends eating foods that contain heart-healthy fats, such as olive and canola oil (stored at room temperature), salmon, tuna, avocado, and nuts and seeds. You should also cook with healthy oils rather than with butter, lard, cream, or margarine.
Foods You Can’t Eat If You Have Diabetes
If you have diabetes, you should really limit the number of unhealthy foods you eat. While this advice is also true for non-diabetics, it is especially true for diabetics as a way of controlling blood glucose levels. You should avoid junk food, candies, baked goods, ice cream, foods high in salt, and beverages with lots of added sugar (such as most soft drinks and energy drinks). Fried foods and foods high in trans and saturated fats should be avoided as much as possible. You can also use sugar substitutes for your tea and coffee.
How Meal Kits For Diabetics Help Control Diabetes
Generally speaking, most meal kits, like Blue Apron and HomeChef, will have healthy options that are suitable for diabetics. Hello Fresh and Green Chef, for example, both emphasize healthy eating and should present no difficulties for diabetics. Other services, like Blue Apron, Plated, and Gobble, may have some options that are a little too carb-heavy, but so long as you customize your order and read the ingredients then you shouldn’t have any serious problems getting healthy foods from any of these businesses.
Meal kits for diabetics can really help with controlling portions and meal times. Since obesity is a major predictor of diabetes, many diabetics tend to be on a weight-loss program. Many meal kit delivery services now offer weight-loss menus that allow you to easily control your calorie intake.
Secondly, when you eat can have a big impact on your blood glucose levels. For some diabetics, meal timing is an essential component of keeping blood glucose levels stable. For others, however, it is possible to be flexible with meal times and not see any big fluctuations in your blood glucose levels. Meal kit delivery service can make meal planning feel like a routine part of your day, which will make it much easier for you to prepare healthy dishes at the same time every day.
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